Togas, shopping carts, wipeouts, and helmets. Last night was the first Red Bull event in Nashville since 2007: the Red Bull Chariot Race.
As Matt mentioned earlier, the chariots were built by all the different schools in the Nashville area. Each team had three members, two pulling and one riding, and they had to race around this tiny track with terrifying turns. As soon as I saw that track and some of those “chariots” I knew that there was the potential to see someone get hurt, and isn’t that chance of danger what we all want to see in a chariot race?
The first race began at 8pm sharp. Let me tell you something, those frat boys all looked mighty cocky, riding high in their shopping carts. But let me tell you something, you do NOT want to be riding high during this race, you want to be as low to the ground as possible. I say this because those chariots get going FAST and those turns are TIGHT. This leads to frequent wipeouts, and the ground that you’re falling from three feet in the air onto? Pavement. Guys in shopping carts, you are going to bite it. Hard.
I have to say, I had more fun at this event than I have in awhile at something like this. I was laughing, cheering, feeling pangs of adrenalin every time someone almost flipped their chariot, I even got to see a guy probably break his arm (I hope you’re okay, TSU Ninja! You are braver than I). And man, some people played dirty! There is no law in the world of chariot racing, apparently. This “sport” is face-paced, hilarious, and surprisingly exciting. I loved it.
Just in case you’re thinking about taking up chariot racing in the near future, I have a few tips for you:
- Do NOT use a shopping cart. When your team goes to take a tight turn you will fall over. It will hurt.
- The lower you can get your center of gravity, the better. It’s physics, dude.
- If you build your huge chariot frame from scratch do a test run. At least make sure it can turn without falling apart and that when the other team runs over it that it won’t completely fall apart into 10 pieces.
- Elbow and knee pads. You’ll look silly but take a second to think about how badly it will hurt when you fall without them.
There you have it, my brief review of the first Nashville Red Bull Chariot Race. It really was a blast. I hope it doesn’t take Red Bull another three years to get back to Nashville. Congrats to the winners; I think their team name was the Green Beans. They were fast. Good job, boys.
Photograph by Ben Azevedo. Check back soon for even more pics he took of the event!